Only a limited number of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and structurally related hetero-aromatic systems such as anthracene, pyrene or carbazole are industrially produced in pure form. They normally serve as a starting material for the synthesis of dyestuffs, herbicides and pesticides or pharmaceuticals. None of these commercially available pure PAH and hetero-aromatic systems show acute toxic or carcinogenic effects. Coal tar, which is a by-product in the manufacture of metallurgical coke, is the main source for the industrial production of these chemicals. The quantity of coal tar which is co-produced in the coal carbonization process amounts presently to about 16 M tonnes p.a.; three-quarters of this raw material is processed in the existing 127 coal tar refineries throughout the world . The exposure of the environment with these chemicals occuring in the up-grading of coal tar can, however, be neglected in comparison with the exposure with PAH and hetero-aromatic systems from other sources.
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- Polycyclic Aromatic and Heteroaromatic Hydrocarbons
- Springer Berlin Heidelberg
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